We asked Prof Caitriona Ryan:
“The main causes of large-looking open pores include:
• high levels of oil (sebum) production
• reduced elasticity around pores and decreased collagen production in the skin caused by UV damage and aging
• thick hair follicles
In the case of this patient, the loss of collagen and elastin in her skin with advancing age is the most likely cause of her more prominent pores. While a good skincare regimen can certainly reduce the appearance of open pores, procedures to increase collagen production in the skin to tighten the pores can produce a more long-lasting effect.
1. Use oil-free, non-comedogenic skin care and makeup. The word “non-comedogenic” means the product won’t block your pores. When products block the pores, the pores expand and become more noticeable.
2. Cleanse your face twice a day. When oil collects in the pore and combines with dirt or makeup, the pore can become blocked and stretched. Choose gentle, hydrating cleansers which effectively break down oils without stripping the skin of water. Avoid scrubbing or harch products that irritate your skin, causing inflammation which can make your pores more noticeable. At night it is important to double cleanse to remove oil, dirt, pollutants, makeup and SPF residue. Gentle re-balancing exfoliators such as @biologique_recherche_ireland P50 used after cleansing can signficantly reduce the appearance of open pores.For those with oily or acne-prone skin use an exfoliating cleanser or facewash with salicylic acid a few times a week. Salicylic acid helps to remove dead skin cells and excess oil. Using a clarifying or clay mask once a week can help to tighten pores. Our favourite is Biologique Recherche Biomagic Mask - apply a thin layer to areas of enlaged pores, wait until it dries completely and then wash off with cold water.
3. Use a retinoid. Topical retinoids are the most effective skin care products to reduce the appearance of large pores. It works to reduce blackhead activity and normalise keratinisation of the pores while also increasing collagen production in aging skin.
For those with sensitive skin we recommend @skinbetter Alpharet while for those with normal/oily skin we recommend @revisionskincare Retinol Complete.
4. Use a physical sunscreen every day. Chronic UV damage has a dramatic effect on the elasticity of the skin and causes collagen breakdown. The more When skin starts to lose its firmness, appear noticeable. Our favourite physical SPF for those with oily skin, rosaeca and acne is @eltamdskincare Clear.
Procedures to reduce pore size:
As we age, our skin loses its firmness and starts to sag. Pores look larger when skin sags.
There a wide range of procedures which can reduce the appearance of large pores but the most effective options are those that cause a significant increase of collagen and elastin in the skin. The most effective treatments to reduce the appearance of large pores are fractionated resurfacing lasers, microneedling and PRP treatments. All of these treatments stimulate collagen production in the skin which firms the skin and reduces large pores. IPL can have a mild but lesser effect on pore size.
The biostimulating dermal filler Sculptra can also produce a dramatic improvement in overlying pores of the cheeks due to its collagen-stimulating effect. This has been demostrated in clinical studies.